Thursday, December 22, 2011

America, Land of the Freely Arrested

From an article in the NY Times:
By age 23, almost a third of Americans have been arrested for a crime, according to a new study that researchers say is a measure of growing exposure to the criminal justice system in everyday life.

The study, the first since the 1960s to look at the arrest histories of a national sample of adolescents and young adults over time, found that 30.2 percent of the 23-year-olds who participated reported having been arrested for an offense other than a minor traffic violation.


The study did not look at racial or regional differences, but other research has found higher arrest rates for black men and for youths living in poor urban areas.
I have to laugh. Americans love to beat their chest and proclaim their "love of liberty" but they arrest and incarcerate at a rate far beyond almost every other country in the world except for the handful of despot dictatorships. You would think this report would force Americans to look in the mirror. Their myth of "freedom loving" doesn't match up with their eagerness to jail. It is much like the Founding Fathers prating on about "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. while being one of the worse slavery-based societies on the face of the earth.

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